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Ignite Wanaka Chamber of Commerce has contracted its executive officer Naomi Lindsay to work as its new general manager, as part of restructuring within the organisation.

The chamber’s board is also increasing resources and support for events in the Upper Clutha business community.

Ms Lindsay has held an executive officer’s contract with the chamber since 2015.

Over the last six years, she has grown membership from 120 to 370 members, helped deliver the Ignite Wanaka Business Awards and the Wanaka Women in Business series and introduced other events to the business calendar.

Another staff member is being sought to help deliver the chamber’s work.

Meanwhile, the volunteer board members will take on portfolios and work with key stakeholders on strategy and advocacy.

Board chairman Andrew Howard said the chamber was “very excited” to appoint Ms Lindsay.

The board was investing in capability to deliver a strong, connected, diversified local economy that celebrated success and maintained a sense of community, he said.

“She .. has proven herself as a strong advocate for our business community. Her knowledge and networking skills ideally place her to deliver on our ambitious programme,” he said.

Ms Lindsay said she was looking forward to responding to economic challenges in the growing community.

“There are lots of challenges ahead and now is the time to invest in our local Chamber and work together to support our economy and look at opportunities for diversification,” she said.

Ms Lindsay’s 24 years of experience includes media planning and buying, journalism, public relations, marketing strategy, communications, community engagement, event planning and business management.

She operates Forage & Feast and Lindsay Communications and is a member of the New Zealand Institute of Directors.